Re: Historical evidence for Jesus (was Ossuary with the name of

Date: Mon Oct 28 2002 - 03:22:18 EST

  • Next message: Dick Fischer: "Re: Historical evidence for Jesus"

    In a message dated 10/28/2002 12:21:11 AM Pacific Standard Time, PASAlist

    << < f you do a Google search on "Origins of Christianity", you will find
       many web-pages, some scholarly and some cranky, that argue that Jesus
       Christ never existed at all; that he was just a mythological figure
       that evolved out of other mythological stories (there are many other
       mythological accounts, if I recall correctly of a man/god that
       results from the union of a human and a God). Other scholars have SNIP

      Therefore, instead of this continual chipping away at the bits of the
      bible that contradict our scientific knowledge, I would prefer to see
      some more solid debate on why we believe Jesus Christ was real. A
      creationist takes it on faith that the biblical account of Creation
      is historically true. I guess just about everyone on this list takes
      it on faith that Jesus Christ was a historical character. What's the
      difference? The difference, I suspect, is that we know that Jesus is
      absolutely central to our faith, whereas the Creation is perceived by
      many as not being a key issue. But to an unbelieving outsider there
      would be just as much reason to question the existence of Christ as
      to disbelieve the Creation account.

      Therefore, let's try and have some positive debate to build up our
      faith, rather than this continual chipping away.>>

      Although the active atheists like to cite the myths of the first century
    which are similar to the story of Jesus, they are for the most part out of
    date. That whole debate really belongs to the 20's or somewhere in there. I
    am often distressed by Fundamentalist scholarship, but the atheist
    scholarship is just as bad and sometimes worse. If you can find a serious
    journal that is currently publishing such arguments, I might be interested in
    answering some of them. But, most of what I have seen is so shallow, sloppy,
    speculative and uninformed by the answers given long ago, it makes creation
    science look good.

      As to Genesis, I don't like to divorce the creation account from the the
    next 10 chapters. They are a unit, and the main reason I believe they are
    divine accommodations to the science/traditions of the times is because they
    reflect those traditions and taken as VCR accounts they are falsified by
    various scientific disciplines---so much so that those holding to their
    historical accuracy either have to take the Bible out of context and
    virtually rewrite it to agree with science, or go off into the imaginary
    world of creation science and deny the validity of modern science.

      The Gospels and the early witness to Jesus in Paul on the other hand have
    little to do with science. There is no archaeological falsification of
    Christ's history. Naturalism, as a philosophy will reject the accounts
    because of their supernatural elements; but the sciences per se have nothing
    to say against the historical accounts of the gospels. That is the first
    difference. The second difference is that the gospels are written within a
    generation of the events, and such information as we have suggests that they
    go back to eye-witness accounts. Gen 1-11 was written one to two millennia
    after the events.
      The Bible is a collection of books. They must each be treated on their own
    merits; and the gospels, for my money especially Mark and Luke, are as sound
    a historical foundation as for any history in the ancient world.


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